- Important: All passwords were reset on 06/15/11. Old passwords will no longer work. Click here to retrieve your password.
- Subscribe to Our Free Dewsletter
We are non-commercial, all volunteer and supported by our readers. Please help sustain the Dew by making a donation.
Georgians should think young person for Senate
Since Georgia will be choosing a new U.S. senator in 2014, what would be best consideration for the people of Georgia in picking this person?
One thing for certain: forget sheer logic, which is too simplistic a way for the voters of Georgia to act. After all, no matter what political race you consider, it’s not the reasonable logic about any of the candidates in the races that determines the winner. It’s always politics that enters the picture, as it probably should, in selecting the person to represent any geography in any election.
Yet especially in races for the U.S. Senate, instead of thinking politically, it would always be best for the citizens of the state to think strategically. After all, the office of senator is for a six year term, and during those six years, a senator begins to build seniority. By the time the senator is in his or her second term, they should be pretty far up the totem poll of ranking senators, especially in their own party. Get a person of their party to be president, or be in the majority party in the Senate, and they begin to build a power base within their chosen committee assignments.
That’s why it’s regretful to hear of U.S. Sen. Saxby Chambliss saying that he won’t seek a third term in the Senate. Should he have won a third term, he would be well up in seniority, compared to Georgia sending a newcomer junior senator to the Capitol. That would have translated into a Georgian having much more power in the Senate.
So how should Georgians be thinking about their next senator? In one word, strategically. Send someone to be in the Senate who has good staying power, and over the years, can build seniority to become an even more influential senator.
That means, in effect, Georgia should elect someone who is relatively young to that post. That person needs to have the credentials to get elected politically, but also have the intelligence and background to do a good job once there.
Though Georgians from all walks of life could fill that slot, among the potential candidates are the 14 Georgians who now serve in the U.S. House of Representatives. While seniority in the House doesn’t count in the Senate, at least a congressman would know the ways of Washington, which should give a leg up in serving.
Look at the list of the current Georgia congressmen. Four of the 14 are under the age of 46. Based on age alone, any of these four gentlemen would be primed to serve.
District: Congressman, Age
- Jack Kingston, 57
- Sanford Bishop, 66
- Lynn Westmoreland, 62
- Hank Johnson, 58
- John Lewis, 72
- Tom Price, 58
- Rob Woodall, 41
- Austin Scott, 43
- Doug Collins, 46
- Paul Broun, 66
- Phil Gingrey, 70
- John Barrow, 57
- David Scott, 66
- Tom Graves, 43
What Georgia should not do is to send an elderly representative (or anyone else) to the Senate for a caretaking term. They would never gain enough seniority to be effective.
So, Rob Woodall (age 42 on February 11), Austin Scott, Doug Collins and Tom Graves: strategically, they are our best choices among representatives. And if other relatively younger Georgians would consider the election, they would be in a strategic position to benefit the state for years.
- Editor's note: This story originally published at the GwinnettForum.com.
Worthy of Comment
Also on the Dew
"Where is the Love?" Kristof asks in his Thanksgiving column for the New York Times. Thanksgiving is a euphemistic feast. I still haven't found just the right term to describe cannibals bloodlessly and indirectly destroying and consuming their own kind. Some call it "sacrifice," but that too is a euphemism. "Symbolic predation" doesn't work because the injury and destruction are all too real. The culture of obedience preaches that less than lethal force is OK as long as there's an ulterior motive, better yet an ideological imperative. The culture of obedience inflicts force to impose peace. The U.S. is still destroying the village to Read on →
Nothing is as it seems in the land of the Cons. We've got to remember that. Sometimes it seems that, regardless of the issue, con men have to deceive, even if it means cutting off their own noses or, if they happen to be politicians, the noses of the constituents they expect to vote for them. If that makes no sense, it is still a fact in the twenty states where Governors, no doubt on the advice of their Representatives in Congress, are rejecting the extra dollars that would extend health care to people not earning enough to afford even subsidized Read on →
"If you ever get the chance to go to Dallas, take it from me, pass it by," so sang Jimmy Buffett. "People do you wrong down in Dallas," the song pointed out. "Dallas," written by Roger Bartlett in 1974, had nothing to do with the pain we associate with "Big D." Yet the tragedy and heartache still comes to mind whenever the song is played -- at least 'round here. Some of John F. Kennedy's advisers wished the president would pass Dallas by. His personal secretary, Evelyn Lincoln told JFK of premonitions about a Dallas trip. Kennedy revealed a sense of Read on →
Last week Americans saw heavy media coverage of the death 50 years ago of President John F. Kennedy. I couldn't help but compare the aftermath and funeral of JFK with that of Abraham Lincoln, both victims of assassins. One reason this came to mind is because I had just finished a year-long project -- reading Carl Sandburg's six volume biography of Lincoln. (Altogether, it was about 2,400 pages, and that in small type. I gave myself a year to read it, and as a reward, could read a shorter book when I finished each volume.) Sandburg's massive biography is a great read, Read on →